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The Semi-Detached House

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The Semi-Detached House


Published August 23, 2011


LibriVox recording of The Semi-Detached House by Emily Eden. Read by Elizabeth Klett.

If you're a Jane Austen fan, you'll enjoy Emily Eden's comic novels of manners, The Semi-Detached House (1859) and The Semi-Attached Couple (1860). At the opening of The Semi-Detached House, the beautiful (but rather petulant) Lady Blanche Chester, newly married and pregnant, is being installed in a suburban house while her husband is away. Her encounters with her neighbors, and the intrigues of the neighborhood, soon come to absorb and annoy her. (Summary by Elizabeth Klett)

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M4B format available


Source Librivox recording of a public-domain text

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Reviews

Reviewer: ListeninginChicago - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 16, 2012
Subject: Light and fun
Another excellent reading by Elizabeth Klett.

I agree with the earlier comment by TheBookworm - unfortunate that they had to cast the schemers as Jewish when schemers exist in all racial groups. Even with that, I found the book lighthearted and fun to listen to and would recommend it.
Reviewer: TheBookworm - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 12, 2011
Subject: The Semi
Pleasant novella of mid-Victorian manners very well read by Elizabeth Klett. Not great literature but an enjoyable and nicely paced story of how various characters (with notable exceptions) overcome their prejudices through the influence of unassuming Mrs. Hopkinson.

[Spoiler alert!!]

In this tale, the antithesis of the noble and generous English is a family of pretentious and manipulative Jews, complete with stereotypical names. The author seems to be telling us that even as Christian converts they cannot escape the inborn proclivities of their "race". This stuff is very distasteful, and the text is not at all saved - at least for me - by one sympathetic Jewish character. I suggest we learn from this novel by reading it as a sort of historical ethnography that shows how insidious anti-Semitism came to be taken for granted by entire classes.

TheBookworm, who grew up in a semi, (Manchester, UK)
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